Pietro Fittipaldi joins Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing for 2024 IndyCar Series season

Pietro Fittipaldi will be competing on a full-time NTT IndyCar Series basis in the No. 30 Dallara-Honda for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing for the 2024 season.

The news comes as the 27-year-old Fittipaldi from Miami, Florida, spent this season competing in the FIA World Endurance Championship with Team JOTA, where he achieved a victory in the Six Hours of Monza in the LMP2 class. Fittipaldi, who is also the grandson of two-time Formula One champion and the 1989 IndyCar champion Emerson fittipaldi, is also in his fifth consecutive season serving as a test and reserve competitor for MoneyGram Haas F1 Team.

“It’s an honor to join a team of the caliber of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing,” Fittipaldi said. “With the experience I’ve gained over the last few years in F1 and other racing series, I am looking forward to the challenge of racing in INDYCAR, one of the most competitive and versatile racing series in the world. I want to thank Mr. Rahal, Mr. Lanigan, and Mr. Letterman for the opportunity and their trust and confidence in me. I can’t wait to get started.”

Fittipaldi, who grew up competing in karts, achieved the 2011 title in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, with five career victories under his belt through 2012 before he moved to Europe to pursue a racing career in open wheels in 2013. In 2014, he achieved the Protyre Formula Renault Championship for MGR Motorsport before he graduated to the FIA Formula 3 European Championship in 2016 and winning the MRF Challenge Formula 2000 title. He would then record a championship in the Formula V8 3.5 series for Lotus in 2017 before being named a part-time competitor for Dale Coyne Racing for the 2018 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season. Despite breaking both legs following an accident in the World Endurace Championship 6 Hours of Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Fittipaldi competed in the final five IndyCar events on the schedule, where he achieved a career-best ninth-place finish at Portland International Raceway.

In 2019, Fittipaldi became a reserve and test competitor for Haas F1 Team. He also spent the season competing in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters for Audi Sport’s Team WRT and Team Rosberg along with Pinnacle Motorsport in the 2019-20 F3 Asian Championship. In 2020, Fittipaldi made his first two career starts in Formula One for Haas in the final two events of the season, where he filled in for the injured Romain Grosjean and recorded his best result of 17th place in the Sakhir Grand Prix at Bahrain International Circuit.

In 2021, Fittipaldi made three IndyCar starts for Dale Coyne Racing with Rick Ware Racing, where he notched a season-best 15th-place result at Texas Motor Speedway and finished 25th in his first Indianapolis 500 start. He also competed in the 2022 European Le Man Series with Inter Europol Competition, where he notched a career-best runner-up result in the 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in the LMP2 class.

Through nine IndyCar career starts, Fittipaldi has achieved an average-finishing result of 20.3. The 2024 season will mark Fittipaldi’s first full-time campaign in the IndyCar circuit as he will compete alongside new teammate Christian Lundggard, who achieved his first IndyCar victory in the Honda Indy Toronto at Exhibition Place in Toronto, Canada, this past season. The team’s third competitor, Graham Rahal, is also expected to return with a new extension that has yet to be announced.

“I’m very pleased that we’ve been able to have Pietro join RLL as the driver of the No. 30 car,” Bobby Rahal, co-owner of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, said. “He has had previous experience in INDYCAR in doing partial seasons with Dale Coyne Racing and impressively qualifying 13th at Indianapolis in 2021. I got to meet him then and since that time he has worked hard to become the reserve driver for Haas F1’s team. And from our discussions, I have been impressed with the maturity and experience that he will now bring to our program. I look forward to seeing what he can do over a full season of INDYCAR competition in 2024.”

“We are proud and excited to welcome Pietro to our team,” Mike Lanigan, co-owner of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, added. “The Fittipaldi family name has always been associated with winning and competitiveness in our sport. The legacy lives on with Pietro and we welcome the challenges in keeping the tradition alive.”

Fittipaldi’s move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing means that he will become the sixth different competitor to pilot the team’s No. 30 entry since 2020. The No. 30 Honda commenced this past IndyCar’s season with Jack Harvey, but Harvey was released by the team after 14 starts and finishing no higher than 13th. The team then ran the No. 30 entry with Conor Day at World Wide Technology Raceway before former Formula 2 competitor Jüri Vips piloted the ride in the final two events of the 2023 season.

With his plans for next season set, Fittipaldi’s first full-time campaign in the NTT INDYCAR Series begins with the 2024 season-opening event at the Streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, for the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. The event is scheduled to occur on March 10 and will be broadcast on NBC.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com

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